S. Korea's SK to launch seven 4G smartphones
South Korea's top mobile carrier SK Telecom said Wednesday it would this year offer seven smartphone models and one tablet device running on ultra high-speed network technology.
SK launched its super-fast 4G wireless services, based on Long-Term Evolution (LTE) technology, in Seoul in June and plans to secure national coverage by 2013.
LTE promises fast data traffic and quicker access to applications such as television programmes, movies and video conferencing.
The company said it would this month launch two phones, from Samsung Electronics and Taiwan's HTC Corp, for its LTE service.
Samsung will offer two additional LTE smartphones through SK Telecom in October and November. Its tablet PC, the Galaxy Tab 8.9, will hit the local market before December with LTE technology.
LG Electronics will release its first LTE smartphone next month, while Pantech will provide two LTE smartphones in October and December, SK said in a statement.
The carrier said it aims to lure 500,000 LTE subscribers by December, five million next year and 15 million by 2014.
With global technology giant Apple expected to unveil its upgraded version of the iPhone next week, others are in a rush to attract users by pushing out new smartphones armed with faster network technology.
Official data showed gadget-mad South Korea had 15 million smartphones at the end of July. The figure is expected to hit 20 million by the end of this year, about 40 percent of the country's overall wireless market.
South Korea already has the the world's top Internet download speeds, according to a study released this month by Pando Networks.
(c) 2011 AFP